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As 2014 draws to a close we thought we would take a look back over the past year at some of the great event industry blog posts and articles that have been published across the web. The event industry continues to change with technological advances which means it can be hard to keep your finger on the pulse, luckily for events professionals there is certainly no shortage of very talented and inspirational individuals who are happy to share their knowledge and thoughts on their websites & blogs. Whether its a top 20 list, a case study or a detailed "how to" blog post, 2014 has seen them all plus more!
We have compiled a list of our own personal favorites and seperated them into categories for your easy browsing needs. Needless to say there will have been posts we have missed as there are simply not enough hours available to read them all, but we hope you find our list below inspiring... and there are hopefully a few little gems that you may have not seen at there time of posting.
The categories are as follows:
Yes, there’s Evernote and Google Docs for capturing important information at work. But when traffic gets high and you need to take down notes, leave a reminder, and send a co-worker a message in seconds, nothing beats Post-Its. This tool reviewed by Adrian takes the utility of Post-Its to another level!
For the average user, Google Docs is just another word processing tool. For Kelvin Newman though, it’s so much more than that. Here are several ways you can save time and money by adding Google Docs to your arsenal.
Mike McAllen has very straightforward advice when it comes to videos on events: Go after emotions and you’ll keep the audience engaged and interested! In this post, he shows you how you can move your audience and their emotions to the right direction at corporate events with the help of videos.
Want to increase the effectiveness and productivity of your tradeshow exhibition? There’s an app for that! Actually, scratch that…Linda shows you 5 apps that help you get more out of the time you get with potential clients and partners.
You don’t want to mess up the ‘check-in,’ a golden opportunity to make that first impression. Read this guide by Ben Schwartz and ensure that your attendees are checked in smoothly. Grab a notebook and pen though as this is one detailed blog post!
Often, we try to create events so engaging that the attendees put their phones and other devices away to tune in…and it’s HARD! But remember what they say: “If you can’t beat them, join them.” Maybe it’s about time we enlist the help of mobile devices (or second screens) instead of taking them out of the equation. Read this post by Traci!
For many, cloud computing represents convenience and ease of access. But while such associations are correct, cloud computing offers more than convenience especially to event professionals. This blog post shows you what cloud computing has done for the industry and the cloud “killer” you should watch out for in your events.
First, it was cloud computing and then came the event apps. Event planning & management technology is constantly changing, and it can be hard for event professionals to keep up and decide whether to make a switch. Worry not, here are 5 steps from Dave that will increase your technology ‘savvy-ness’.
In this post, John Dubielak interviews 4 event professionals and experts regarding technology: their sources of inspiration, the most exciting use of technology in their experience and what attendees expect as far as tech goes.
Take a trip down memory lane, where we would hand out evaluation forms to get feedback from our event. For a good while, that worked. But now that event data is available, we think it’s about time to make the switch. Look at the top 2 problems with the usual feedback, and what you should do instead.
Data gathered from previous events can help you customize your next tradeshow, exhibition, etc. at a personal level, and that’s nice! However, you can do so much more with big data – such as increase sponsor ROI and cut costs as this post shows.
Big data – this is the term for the massive amounts of data and its complex structure. In this post, Mitra interviewed 3 experts on the topic – revealing 8 actionable steps to manage and get more out of big data.
Switching from one form of technology to another can be painful but necessary process. However, there are many ways to reduce the disruption and inconvenience for your staff and clients. Read and be prepared.
Used by a growing number of retail establishments, beacon technology has changed the way businesses push content to their target audience. But you know what’s even more exciting? Using it at live events!
Wi-fi is becoming more important than food according to Donna’s client, and this isn’t as much of an exaggeration as you’d think. Read this article to learn how you can improve Wi-fi connection at your events, increase app utilization, and boost sponsorship at the same!
We’re already faced with a lot of planning and management tasks every day, and it seems like a good idea to lighten the load by picking a web-based event app than develop a new one. For the short term, it might be the way to go. But in the long run, native apps give you more bang for your buck…and here are 5 reasons why!
You just bought a new event app and it has everything you could possibly ask for. So what’s the next step? Ensure that your staff and guests use it in your next event. Let Jessica teach you some ideas to get your target audience to use it.
We all want to be productive, who doesn’t!? Being actually productive, however, is hard work. This post by Zach Ferres looks into his general strategy for staying productive and the business tools he uses.
Preparing for AV rentals can be very ‘hit and miss.’ If you’re planning an event and you don’t how to tackle the AV rental nightmare, worry not. This post by Austin shows you the 5 AV rentals that you’ll most likely need and must have.
Events are about people. You can have the fanciest event app around and have attendees’ eyes glued to it, but you might be getting in the way of face-to-face interaction, the very reason why events exist! Traci Browne discusses this in her post.
This is just a sample of a 5-part series by Kristi showcasing the best tools and apps for document creation, file sharing, conferencing, program management, and travel. Be sure to read the whole series. You might find something you need and like.
We all know that social media is integral to the success of the events industry. But social media is more than just getting Likes and Shares or announcing your event via Twitter…and there are so many things that can go wrong. In this post, Kelvin Newman looks into the most common regrets he himself had when it came to social media – and what he did about it.
We are all familiar with the networking potential of LinkedIn. Despite that, many still sit on the fence, and half-heartedly build a profile but don't bother beyond that. If that sounds like a certain someone you know, read this post by Caitlin. And discover why LinkedIn is a must.
Whether you are a social media veteran or just about to get your hands dirty, it’s important to understand how attendees nowadays think and how you can use social media networks to your advantage. There is a lot more to it than being able to chat or post a 140-character announcement.
With all of these talks about social media and its importance, you’d think event planners would know how to make full use of it. This isn’t always the case however! Don’t just wait for others to find your event on social media, make them LOVE your event with these tips and tricks from Kristi!
When it comes to engaging potential B2B clients, nothing beats LinkedIn. For starters, emails sent via LinkedIn have as much as 10x higher open rates than your usual email! Let Brian Smith show you how to use LinkedIn to expand your network and find clients that need your event planning expertise.
If you’re struggling to engage and get the conversation going with potential attendees on Facebook and Twitter, you are not alone. Follow the 4 tips outlined by David in this post and breathe new life to your ailing Facebook or Twitter page.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn – these are all useful platforms to reach your target audience. But know this: You are at the mercy of the social media network you’re in…and they have shown their willingness to tweak things to their favor. Here are some ideas from Dave on how to bullet-proof your social media strategy for your conference.
Twitter is an awesome tool for reaching and engaging your attendees. However, just because your attendees follow you it doesn’t mean you’ve built a relationship with them. You have to be prepared to do work…the right kind of work. Here are 12 tips.
So here’s a guy who’s known for promoting the benefits of social media at events, and he’s telling you that not all events should use it! This is an interesting read with one important lesson: If your attendees are not on Facebook or Twitter, you’re looking in the wrong place.
Hashtags have become a popular way to promote an event, product, cause…and just about everything else! If you’re not using them, you’re missing out. In this post by Luke, he shows you how to use hashtags for promoting your event and engaging your audience.
Having a top of the line social media management and metrics tool doesn’t mean you have to cut deep in your pocket. Vivian has compiled the 15 hottest social media M&M tools out there…and yay, they’re FREE!
It’s easy to say that social media is essential for engaging your audience and networking for your event. Knowing how exactly to track progress is a different matter. In this post, Celeste Kaufman looks into the 3 most important social media metrics to keep an eye on.
When the lights are switched off and the crowd goes home, your sponsors want to see a positive return for helping you fund your event. They want their message to reach a wider audience and paint a positive reputation. Here’s how you can increase your engagement numbers and keep your sponsors happy.
Technology has affected us in more ways than we care to count. Thanks to technology, clients nowadays can just about anything in an instant, and they expect the same convenience wherever they go. Here are 4 trends that the modern client expects you to keep up with.
The event industry has to overlap and collaborate with other industries like manufacturing, waste management, equipment rental, and others. In a recent report by Social Tables and Meetings Mean Business, experts have noted the 9 ways that meetings and conferences will significantly affect the hotel industry.
This is a very interesting post. We are all familiar with ads that are disguised as educational material, also known as native advertising. Native advertising is present not just on the radio or TV. The events industry also uses ‘native advertising’ as well. But is it a good or not?
Technology change in this day and age is just crazy! But as they say, some things change but some don’t. While others are busy releasing new apps and developing new tools, Corbin takes a look at the 5 things that will probably remain the same…and why you should pay attention to them.
It’s worth repeating again: The technology trends in the event industry are ever-changing! What works 3 to 6 months ago could be frowned upon today. Learn how the industry’s tech landscape will look like in 2015 and what you should do about it.
Holiday parties aren’t just about the cake though we all look forward to it. J Here are the 5 hot holiday trends according to Danielle. Trust us, you can just take one of these ideas and you’re sure to have a sizzling holiday party.
The events industry – from social media, technology, trends, etc. – is moving really fast. You want to keep up with the changes…if only to keep up with your competitors who spend 8 hours consuming industry-related news. It’s not hard really, take a look at these 4 tools.
This short article is a quick but strong reminder why prioritizing user experience is the trend…not the norm. I guess even billion dollar companies can learn a thing or two about UX.
Kid’s birthday parties are always fun… If you’re planning a party for a young one, you can take a lot of ideas from this post by Tori.
Wondering how to theme and decorate your event for the holidays? Tori’s answer: Cranberries! From chandeliers, mantles, vases, and more, Tori shows you how you can decorate those with fresh cranberries.
If it’s your first time, planning a company Christmas party can be a scary task and the pressure of organizing something your co-workers will be happy about can be enormous. No worries, here are 18 steps to help you turn this insurmountable task into a fun and challenging experience.
Ah! The jitters of the woman about to get wed, what bride doesn’t feel that? For Nikki the event professional, the jitters are twice as bad! Read this funny experience by Nikki, and realize that the simplest and purest way is always the best.
These are 5 unique, tasty treats that will fill your holiday events with joy. Need I say more?
It’s the holiday season, and you most likely have a party or two to organize…and of course, you want to stand out from the rest! With the 10 holiday party themes listed here, you sure will.
You’ve already picked a theme, the food is ready, and the lighting is perfect…what else to do? Well, here’s something to add zing to your Christmas party: 12 minute-to-win-it games that will get everyone moving.
The event industry is bustling this Holiday season, and we may lag behind in our gift buying and wrapping schedule. While we might think we’re smart enough not to buy picture frames, gift cards, and other ‘boring’ stuff for gifts, we end up doing just that. Don’t make this same mistake this year!
Need to decorate the office for the Holidays but don’t have the time? Well, nobody said in-office decoration has to be extravagant and expensive. Here are 5 décor ideas that are easy and look the part.
An event management company’s job doesn’t end after the event. For starters, there’s a ton of food waste to deal with. Sure, you can probably recycle the majority of it. But why not reduce food waste in the first place? If that sounds like a good idea, here are 7 ways from Shawna McKinley.
Inherent vice is the very reason why we should take green and sustainable events even more seriously. In this post, Paul doesn’t just preach. He shows you how you can minimize the damage and deterioration caused by events through 18 actionable steps.
This is a very good read on why more and more event planners are jumping on the sustainability train. And if you don’t have an active dating life, this post by Amy will at least give you an idea on how it feels.
Jim Spellos created a marvelous app that helps increase food recovery through awareness and social sharing – Whole Earth Calculator. In this interview, Jim reveals what compelled him to create the app, how he planned it despite a busy schedule, what we can expect from the second version, and more.
When talking about exhibitions, we often look into the ways to do them RIGHT. But for every useful method or trick, there are a dozen ways to do it wrong. Learn about the 20 most common mistakes people make when exhibiting…and steer clear of them!
Attendees – they’re the lifeblood of every tradeshow, exhibition, concert, or conference. Not meeting your projected attendance could mean disaster! This post from MarketingZone.com shows you how to plan and conduct pre-show events to ensure successful attendance.
Event coordinators have the 5th most stressful job in the world (source), and that usually comes from trying to get the best concert, tradeshow, or exhibition going while staying within budget. It’s a tough balancing act so read this post to learn how you can cut down your costs and time investment when planning an event.
This event report by Anna Sekula picks apart the event/press preview by Old Navy for its 2015 summer collection. Using a combination of road signs, food stations, farm stands, and other cool elements, Old Navy’s press preview is a textbook example of how to create a road-trip themed event.
A global brand with over a million owner-operators, crew members, and office staff, McDonald’s knows how important their biannual Worldwide Convention is to their success in 2014 and beyond. Read this post by Mitra Sorrells and learn how McDonald’s engaging website, technical support team, and event app ensured attendance and engagement.
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.” If you’re the sort to take things too seriously, you might be robbing your audience of the opportunity to have fun and grow with your event. This post has a lot of good links on case studies and experiences where the “fun factor” made a positive difference in serious events!
We can’t get enough of money-saving tips, can we? J Well, here’s David’s list of 50 money-saving techniques when planning an event. We highly recommend editing and changing it to a checklist that you can print out especially if you’re new to the industry.
Hotels, restaurants, stadiums, and open spaces are the most common picks for event venues. Chuck Salem, however, thinks you’ll get more bang for your buck by picking a cruise for your next venue.
We may not have flying robot maids and Hollywood doesn’t give us enough ideas on how a meeting room in the future should look like. However, that didn’t stop a handful of hoteliers from creating the meeting room of the future through DIY tech.
Not all venues are created equal and neither are budgets. If you need a quick guide on which type of venue suits which type of budget, this post by Andrew is spot on. Not to mention he has other venue-related resources at the bottom that are worth reading.
More and more clients are realizing the importance of sustainability. The following event venues are not just sustainable, they’re classy too. Just take Manchester Metropolitan University, which invested £350 million in its estate. The results are amazing!
Boring meetings – everyone has had their share of those…meetings that ramble on without accomplishing anything. Know the signs that your meeting is going south and how to fix it fast.
If you’re not using blogs to find customers and widen your network, you’re doing it wrong! In the event industry however, it can be hard to come up with topics that would be of interest to your audience and experts within the industry. Well, you can kiss your worries goodbye as this post by Anna Wickham gives you 25 blog topic ideas that will ALWAYS have readers!
The digital environment we live in has its PROs and CONs, and one of the bigger worries is that human attention span is now down to 8 seconds because of it. Let this article by Holly Krenek invigorate your arsenal with ideas that will grab your readers’ attention…and keep it!
“The sooner, the better!” This seems to be the motto within the events industry, and why not!? After all, the early bird catches the worm. But give this post by Becki Cross a read. You will see that there is definitely a case for slowing down.
Schlitz – the American Beer brand – hosted the “Schlitz Bouts” to build its brand. A combination of entertainment, style, and 20’s theme boxing, this event takes you almost a century back in time! Read on and find out why an iconic brand used this theme…and how it turned out.
Knowing how stressful it is to plan an event from scratch, it’s easy to just stick to the experiences and ideas we have had with previous events. While there are times that this works, taking this “cookie cutter” approach can actually set you back. Learn why you should let go of previous experiences and ideas – no matter how successful – to create new ones.
Kind of an extension of Jeff Hurt’s post above, this one looks into the risk factor. Whether or not you decide to adopt new technologies and trends in the events industry, there is risk and it’s important to assess both sides of the coin. This is especially helpful for those who are thinking about adopting a new event app, tool, or planning approach.
When it comes to exhibiting, picking the venue is half the battle. You want one that’s easily accessible, spacious enough, and in line with your event’s objectives. Candy Adams shows you how to go about picking a venue for your next exhibition…the RIGHT way!
To hold the best event going, whilst staying within budget and schedule is the ideal of every event planner. There are a lot of details to juggle, and Janelle Miller shows you how to achieve excellence by simplifying your workflow.
Holding a conversation - some are good at it while others… not so much. If you fall into the second category, you may find this post of great help. It’s not lengthy by any means, but it sure packs a lot of good advice on keeping your guests talking and having fun at your event.
You may have encountered that corporate client who says he knows exactly what he wants for his event…and they need you to do is execute their plan. It sounds appealing, but we all know that planning an event with such a specific brief can throw up its fair share of issues. Monique gives you 6 questions you can ask your client to steer the planning in the right direction without making it feel like a power struggle.
You can’t live in a bubble if you want to succeed in the events industry. You want to widen your network and establish your identity…and it’s best to do this whilst still a student. Written after her final fall semester, Chrissy Delphia shows you how and why you should build your digital identity.
Expanding your network in the event industry is a tough job. For starters, you have to talk to people and even speak publicly…stuff that can strike fear in some of us. If you feel the same way, these 5 public speaking tips from Lara McCulloch will help you out.
We often talk about best practices, tips, case studies of who did what…and so on. However, we hardly ever look into bad habits that stop us from being the event planners we’ve always wanted to be. What are those terrible habits? Let Julius enlighten you.
Attendees who feel at home are happy attendees. In this post by Alesandra, you’ll learn 10 hospitality tips from wedding planners and professionals that will make your guests feel warm and welcome.
Freebies – software companies in particular love offering those. But really, is it free? Not really according to David Schenberg. Read this post and learn why “free” isn’t really free…and the factors you should consider instead of just upfront cost.
Like meeting and event planners, hoteliers aim to create a warm, satisfying event for attending groups, and we can learn a lot from what they do. Here are 12 info-packed and actionable tips to engage, enlighten, and energize your event’s attendees!
Jenise takes a page out of the content marketing manual, and she shows you how you can build relationships and turn onlookers to customers by giving something away for free. Not only is this post in the spirit of the holidays, it has good business advice too!
Event planners and managers, especially those that work on an international scale, are always on the move. If you’re pulling your hair out and suffering from a packing meltdown every time you travel, these 4 tips will help you keep things manageable.
We love sponsors, don’t we? While ticket sales can be erratic, sponsorships secured ahead of time can provide the safety net necessary for a company to increase its reach. However, Liz feels that many aren’t integrating sponsors in their events well enough. Here are 4 ways to get your sponsors more involved in the event.
We all know how important the right lighting is for your event’s ambiance. But we also know how expensive lighting fixtures and installations can get. So what to do? Take the DIY route! It’s fun, relatively inexpensive, and it works.
While the majority of the population look forward to the year-end as a time for relaxation and merry making, it’s a busy season for event and meeting planners. Here’s how you can create some breathing space in your life during the busy holidays.
We all hate meetings that look dragging and boring. With a bit of know-how however, you can amp up the color factor for your next event, ensuring that your event has that positive and lively atmosphere.
When used right, case studies can be an effective marketing and engagement tool. What many find challenging, however, is writing the case study itself. Allow the 5 tips from Lewis Humphries to guide you in writing a case study that people want to read.
The next time someone doubts the need for an event management company to organize for them, make them read this blog post by Thomas Johnson. The 3 reasons he outlines are spot on and sure to convince your clients.
Written by an experienced public speaker, this post teaches you what to look for when hiring a speaker for your event, and what you should do to get the most out of a keynote speaker.
The role of a giveaway is to make a lasting impression…something to close the event on a high note. So why are you giving away pens at every event!? In this article by Randy, you’ll learn what giveaways are supposed to do and how to make them effective.
Picking a theme for an event isn’t as easy as it looks. It isn’t always about picking what’s trendy or cool. Matter of fact, some events experienced massive success by adopting an ‘old school’ theme. So how do you know the right theme for your event? This article looks at 5 important principles.
Selfies – it’s a worldwide trend and it looks like it’s here to stay for a while. So why not use them to engage your audience better? In this post, Pat talks about the “Candids Module” and how it paid off in their event.
When funds run thin, it can be hard to convince your client to get a professional videographer for their wedding. After all, pictures are included in the package, right? But as this article shows, there’s just something about memories on videos.
80% of online visitors watch video, a far cry from the 20% of visitors who’d read the entire text content. If that isn’t enough to convince you to use video at every opportunity, the statistics in this and examples in this post should do.
Couples today have shown willingness to steer off the traditional wedding ceremony route…opting for something more creative and reflective of their styles and tastes. If your client wants a unique ceremony but can’t pinpoint exactly how, here are 5 suggestions that can help you.
Food at events isn’t just about picking the right entrees and desserts. It’s just as important to know how much food is enough. To work that out, there are 3 questions you have to ask and there are a couple of guidelines to keep in mind. Read on and find out.
“How am I supposed to sell the tickets?” This is the first question you have to answer when you organize an event. While selling online via various ticketing platforms is the sure-fire way to go, there are 5 things you can do to sell those tickets faster.
The picture is worth a thousand words. And if you have nice stills and photos from your previous event, you can use Pinterest to promote your company or your next exhibit, concert, or tradeshow. Here are some basics about Pinterest you need to know about.
Not all events are created equal and that’s why many event planners choose to specialize. While it’s good to learn the ins and outs of arranging events for a certain niche, sticking to it will limit your revenue opportunities. Don’t cage yourself in, here are 4 ways to expand your line-up of event services for 2015 and beyond.
As an event planner, you want to organize the best possible event for your client while staying within their budget. Why not give your client a helping hand when creating an estimate? Here are the 5 tips Melanie gives her clients…maybe you should, too!
You could be looking at a £100 ROI For every pound spent on user experience. Perhaps you’ve heard of the term before but don’t understand it fully. This infographic and post by Kristen should help demystify the what, why, and how of user experience…and why it’s crucial for powerful engagement.
"COS's flexible and 'can-do' approach has allowed us to offer a reactive service to our clients where even last minute requests such as weekend or after working hours equipment rental requests are no problem"
Starr, Corinthia Hotel